It’s Golf Jim but not as we know it!

Originally released in June 2020 on September 3rd we are reissuing the final EP from the first line-up of Four Candles.

Comprising four eclectic tracks we find the group at the height of their powers with two epic progressive slow ones and two manic shorter punky pieces. Epic opener “Doughnuts” brings in bassoon, trumpet, piano, and cello to broaden the sound in a piece of melodic magic, a totally new direction for the band. The middle two are more typical of the punk roots of the group, intense bass, huge swathes of guitar, manic drumming and an exercise in vocal excess typical of Mr Moss aka Ian Fourcandles. Closer “Requiem” slows things down for a slow build piece lasting nearly eight minutes – a gentle opening underlies a harrowing narrative of children dying in care homes. The song slowly builds to an intense and ferocious climax. Memorable stuff.

The EP was recorded at 6dB studios in Salford under the watchful eye and steady hand of Simon “Ding” Archer.

Other than the single “Death In Paradise” this is the last release by the group with Jon Rowlinson on bass, his place taken by John Bardsley of the Ombudsmen.

The group are currently rehearsing new material and appear at Strummercamp 2021 on 29th August at Oldham Rugby Union Football Club, Byrth Rd, Oldham OL8 2TJ, UK.

GERMAN SHEPHERD RECORDS NEWS – Dominic Carlton Jones, 2 Lost Souls, Longsight, A Raffle, Charitable Work

Hello

We hope you are all well and coping in these strange times.

Firstly, many thanks to those DJs, Bloggers and websites  who have featured us recently. We really appreciate the support and time you are giving to the label and its artists.

This news is for releases on June 26th plus details of a new signing to the label and progress on some of our fundraising activities….

DOMINIC CARLTON JONES

Eccles based singer, songwriter, and troubadour Dominic Carlton Jones returns with a new double A side – Reach Out To Your Far Horizon/German Bombers

Dominic Carlton Jones  won the Salford Star Best Band/Act 2018 Award for his debut album Salford Punk Poetry Sadness Death New Life, which judges hailed as “inspired and original”. and his work has been rightly praised. The new single sees the seven minute plus “Reach Out To Your Far Horizon” exploring ambient soundscapes with an evocative and emotional spoken word delivery from Dominic. The guitar focused “German Bombers” provides another side of Dominic’s work with layers of picking and riffs building to create an atmospheric bed for more spoken word developing an epic soundscape where vocals kick in with a heartfelt song.

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2 LOST SOULS

The ever productive 2 Lost Souls duo of Ian Moss and Paul Rosenfeld are back with another charity focused single. The harrowing “Don’t You Call It Love”, which Ian premiered at his virtual Stonehenge festival performance, is a direct attack on child sex abuse and the evil people who perpetrate it. All proceeds from the sale of this single will be donated to Childline.

DYCIL Cover Final

LONGSIGHT

We are pleased to announce we will be working with Stockport, GreaterManchester band Longsight starting with a single.

Longsight 1

Longsight are a new indie guitar band from Stockport, North West England. Started in August 2019 their first few gigs have caught the imagination of their peers and music journalists alike.

Si Wolstencroft (The Fall/ Ian Brown’s band) “Absolutely love Longsight. They sound like a cross between The Buzzcocks and New Order”.
The Big issue: “Beg, borrow or steal the entrance fee. Longsight are about to go stellar”.
Cassie Delta KBYD radio California: “The songs have a hurting, haunting, heart-breaking echo to them.”
Manchester Evening News, “No wonder current music sounds banal, Longsight have taken all the best songs”.
Chester Chronicle: “Top new band. Every track sounds like a hit single.”
Glasgow Herald. “Beautifully crafted songs delivered in an unnerving style”.

The band comprises of:

  • Keo (Guitar/vox) formerly in Jez Kerr from A Certain Ratio’s solo band, The Family Bizarre and The Treatment Organisation.
  • Adam Halford (Drums/vox) formerly in The Trainset.
  • Johnny Stringer (Bass/vox) Formerly in The Stipe band.

Longsight’s first single ‘These Chains’ is out now on limited edition 7″ vinyl through Discogs. Produced by Jez Kerr from A Certain Ratio. Their first album is due out early next year through German Shepherd Records pending that a new single is coming soon.

Here’s the band live:

Catch them on Facebook

A RAFFLE

Moff Skellington has made available the original artwork for three of his albums plus the poster designed for his gig at The Peer Hat, Manchester. There are four prizes so four chances to win. All punters need to do is purchase one or more tickets for the chance to enter the prize draw. Entrants get a free copy of Moff’s EP Uncle Roy’s Utopian Vision #1
The closing date for the raffle is Monday 22nd June and winners will be notified by e-mail by Friday 26th June when arrangements will be made for Moff to mail the artwork to the winners.

Pukes A

All proceeds will be donate to The Peer Hat Fundraiser. Tickets can be purchased from this link.

….AND MORE FUNDRAISING

Our recent releases from Four Candles, 2 Lost Souls and Crab Dance GIs are all dedicated to raising money to support The Peer Hat, Manchester a much loved place by everyone at the label and where we hold our annual Meltdown events. We have already raised £265 through these releases but more would help if you are able to support us.

Our recent releases by Moongoose also have a charitable aim with homelessness charity Shelter being the recipient on any income from sales of the EPs.

 

Fee Free Friday and Support to Worthy Causes

Hi Folks, no doubt you will have been bombarded by messages via Bandcamp today, we know, as we have woken up to an in-box full of them, so we will keep this message short and sweet.

It’s a busy day for German Shepherd Records with lots of new releases most of which are for charity and community causes so, if you are able to do so, we would love your support on the following:

2 Lost Souls – Rules : all income from this release is being used to support the Peer Hat in Manchester. The Peer Hat is a vital part of the the gig/music community in the Greater Manchester conurbation and needs some bridging finance to allow them to survive the lock down. It is the venue we mostly use for German Shepherd events and the team there offer a risk free, value for money space to support grass roots music.

Four Candles – Alternative Golf : also supporting The Peer Hat

Moongoose – The Yellow and Black EPs : all proceeds from the sales of these two great EPs will be directed to homelessness charity Shelter.

and finally,

We are running a raffle with a chance to win exclusive artwork by the very talented Moff Skellington – for a ticket and a free download of a Moff EP please go to our Merchandise page on Bandcamp – again proceeds from this draw will be directed towards The Peer Hat.

corduroy bridge

The added bonus today is that Bandcamp are waving their usual 10% fees so we can maximise income for these worthy causes.

Thanks to those of you who have already generously supported the above causes – we are blown away by your kindness.

Have a great day.

Bob and Ian
GERMAN SHEPHERD RECORDS

New Moff Album Due and a busy week….

July 19th sees a new album from Moff Skellington called “Chummy Warder’s Blackspot Honeymoon”.

It’s a busy time for Moff with a further three albums on the way over the next three months. The latest offering returns to Moff’s more experimental side with a host of characters and places which would not be out of place the worlds of Lewis Carroll, Flann O’Brien or Spike Milligan.

With exploding bicycles, gaslit moonjelly, wishing eggs and other alternative aural gifts this is Moff at his most Eddodi.

CWBH Cover

THIS WEEK

We have an incredibly busy Friday coming up with releases from

  • Crab Dance GIs – single
  • Four Candles – EP
  • Cosmic Panthers – EP with cassette version available from the Fuzzy Warbles Bandcamp Page
  • and
  • Moongoose – two EPs

The Moongoose releases will be supported by a podcast from Yorkie which will be released on Thursday on Mixcloud – videos supporting this release will be available from Wednesday on You Tube. All proceeds from the sale of these EPs go towards supporting the work of Shelter.

This months Eighth Day magazine which is out soon features an article about Mark Corrin – please check it out.

Subs Spec Moongoose

News, and lots of it!!

We live in strange and interesting times which means that our usual plans can often be changed at the last minute to accommodate the circumstances.

We had planned on telling you about just one release this week but events and their impact and consequences has lead us to a slightly different state of affairs.

So, we have four announcements in total  this week.

Lets start with the one we were planning to announce……

WEST COAST SICK LINE

Dusty Moonan returns with West Coast Sick Line after a more than two year wait – the last release was 2018’s album “Flat of Engels” – with a brand new five track   EP called “Colour Climax”.

Trademark Sick Line biting wit and slightly dangerous humour are in play for a great set of new tunes. The best description is alternative rock with a pop edge, Pounding beats, great guitars and riffs, and catchy melodies are to the fore for this set. Perhaps the overall sound is a little heavier and a touch more in your face than previous releases.

It’s mostly Dusty on his own this time with the main man providing  vocals, guitars, bass & keyboards. Main support is from Dragan Rolivic who adds Mandolin on track 3, Backing vocals on track 5 and  drums throughout, as well as mixing the release. Further support comes from Mark Shrieves who plays  Bass on track 4.

The whole affair was recorded at recorded at Tucky Park Studios,in Colwyn Bay, North Wales.

It will be released to the world as a download only on June 12th.

WCSL CC 01

FOUR CANDLES

One of the great things about owning your own record label is that you can make fairly quick decisions about when and what you can release.

A new four track from Four Candles was recorded with Simon “Ding” Archer at 6dB Studios in Salford just before lockdown.

With the ongoing impact of the lockdown materially affecting some of the important players in the live music business in Manchester the band took the view that their latest recordings ought to try and assist the financial impact on the venue that has been both the label and our musicians main provider of somewhere to play and present what we do. That venue is The Peer Hat, in Manchester City Centre, and all the proceeds from the Bandcamp sales of the new release “Alternative Golf” will be dedicated to that wonderful place with the hope that when the current situation has been resolved we can see Nick, Dom and co.  up and running again as soon as possible.

There are four tracks on the EP, one of which, Loose Lips,  was previously released as a live recording from the Yerrrr bar in Manchester.

Opener Doughnuts, with a video already up on You Tube, saw it’s live debut at The Eagle in Salford around a year ago with a memorable impromptu set of backing vocals from Julia and Anne from Matthew Hopkins performed from the audience. Basket Case is a typical punk infused rant and closer Requiem is a stunning attack on failings in the Care system for vulnerable people. All in all a great set of tunes.

Release date: June 5th – download only.

PLEASE NOTE THIS IS ANOTHER FREE FEE DAY ON BANDCAMP SO PURCHASE ON THIS DATE MAXIMISES OUR INCOME TO SUPPORT THE PEER HAT.

4cs

2 LOST SOULS

If the decision on the Four Candles release was quick then we approached warp speed on the new release from 2 Lost Souls.

The behaviour of a certain individual and his boss sparked a flurry of activity on Sunday May 24th. The two Paul’s laid down guitars and bass and Ian added his trademark vocals to a pointed attack on the self-styled elite that “run” the country at the moment. Within two hours the finished track was sent to Bandcamp for release and sharing with the world.  A few hours later Ged Babey had penned a review for Louder Than War.

The release is offered for free on Bandcamp with a pay what you want option. Any money raised will as with the Four Candles release be dedicated to supporting The Peer Hat.

OUT NOW!!

and finally…..

COSMIC PANTHERS

NYC and Manchester have proud and distinct musical heritages , think of The Velvet Underground and the Fall , The Ramones and Buzzcocks , Suicide and Joy Division all different in location and output and yet there is something similar in terms of attitude that links them.

Fuzzy Warbles and German Shepherd as labels existing on separate sides of the Atlantic Ocean still share an ethos of releasing and promoting music of true quality by artists who exist outside the mainstream making music out of love and emotional necessity rather as a career choice , both champion the underdog.

And so what does a musical collision between these two cities , these music capitals sound like ? With the world in lockdown they decided , with the aid of smart phones and laptops, to find out.

Ben from Fuzzy Warbles and Ian from German Shepherd swapped ideas and wrote four songs long distance.  Happy with what they had created, they were recorded and, for  our fourth release this week, we give you rumbling synths, guitars that sting, and acid tongued vocals. We welcome you to the cross pollinated world of Cosmic Panthers and the EP Ball The Wall.

Fuzzy Warbles will release the EP in Cassette Format and provide digital download via Bandcamp. German Shepherd will facilitate wider distribution via A1 Music to all the major digital download and streaming sites. Release date is June 5th.

thumbnail_CosmicPanthers

Four Candles announce new EP with new video

Four Candles have announced the release of a new EP “Alternative Golf” which will be released on June 5th. A preview of the EP comes in the form of a brand new video of the track “Doughnuts”.

The group have agreed that any income from the sales of the EP on Bandcamp will be used to support Manchester City Centre venue The Peer Hat which is at risk of closure due to the current lockdown.

More details about the release to follow next week.

4cs

It’s Matrimony!

8th November sees the release of the second single this year from The Harveys.

Previously known as Harveys Rabbit the band reconvened a few years back after success in the 1990s. With that name change and a new line up the core members Tim Lyons and Mick Pullen have brought back the melodic charm and crossover Manchester pop stylings for which they are rightly remembered, and currently appreciated.

Harvey FGMSOTW b
The new single couples a remake of an old Harvey’s Rabbit number “Frank Got Married” with a newer song “Shadow of Wind”. It will be available in digital download and CD formats and accessible from all of the main streaming platforms.

Embracing the Brel/Brecht elements of the bands work this exciting new double A side will be launched on 14th November at The Castle Hotel, Oldham Street, Manchester with support from Vee VV and Four Candles.

The band have also produced a podcast for the German Shepherd Mixcloud Select Channel to support the release of the new single.

Further gigs for The Harveys have been booked:

  • 14th December 2019 – The Peer Hat, Manchester supporting TV Smith – with Matthew Hopkins
  • 1st February 2020 – Jimmy’s, Liverpool supporting The Monochrome Set

 

German Shepherd Newsletter 55

Another fun packed week for kennel followers out there….

FOUR CANDLES

30th August sees the release of a new single from Manchester post-punk trouble causers Four Candles. Recorded live by Big Clive the band deliver “Volcano Burning Blue” from the Nettle Rash album plus a brand new track “Loose Lips” – the release is FREE and is only available from the German Shepherd Records Bandcamp Page. German Shepherd Records Bandcamp subscribers will get the entire set (including the two single tracks) as part of their subscription package. This lively set includes a selection of songs from across the bands’ three releases to date including the memorable “Strange Things Are Happening” set closer where the audience joined the band on stage. Recorded at YERRRR bar in Manchester this is Four Candles at their best – Live and Loud!

FC VBB LL

The recent Record Collector review of the bands latest album Nettle Rash by Mick Middles is rather fulsome in it’s praise although we should point out that the band are not from Salford.

Record Collector Review

If you have not grabbed it yet the Nettle Rash album is still available digitally and we have a limited number of CDs available also

The band play the alternative part of the Colne Blues Festival on Sunday August 25th

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THE HARVEYS

Formerly known as Harveys Rabbit the Peel favourites are back with a debut single under a new name The Harveys. “Skeleton Dance/Laugh At The Stars” pre-releases on September 3rd with the option to purchase a CD single of the release. The single releases proper on 13th September and is launched at The Peer Hat, Manchester on 20th September where the band are supported by Matthew Hopkins and Manchester legends Dislocation Dance. Often described as the English Go-Betweens the band have a unique melodic pop sound with elements of klezmer and other european folk oriented genres folding into the mix.

An up to date biography of the band can be found here.

Harveys Peer Hat

BLACK LIMOUSINE

Three piece Alternative Rockers Black Limousine release their debut single “Dressed In Black” on 6th September – with lots of media interest already generated we expect Rock and Metal stations to pick up on this excellent track. Lead by Four Candles guitarist Mark Taylor ably supported by bassist John Pew and drummer Damien Hughes (Peter Hook, Monaco, Hamsters) the band played a stunning headline set at The Peer Hat on 16th August launching the new single. They were supported by Sam and Tim from The Parish Church who delivered a great set which was also much appreciated by the lively crowd.

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FORTHCOMING RELEASES

Other than the above we have packed programme of releases in the Autumn/Winter with new material from

  • m.t. scott
  • Ember Rev
  • sycloner
  • Moff Skellington
  • Elastikbande
  • Ian and Keith Moss
  • Angry!
  • The Parasite
  • The Parish Church Fire
  • Bouquet of Dead Crows
  • The Get
  • The Harveys
  • Auster Boys
  • Weimar

We are also aiming to release the fourth in our series of Cambridge Calling compilations curated by the inestimable Dave Hammond.

WEBSITE MAKEOVER

Our website has had a refresh with a new layout….as you can see on the left hand side of the page a wealth of information about what we do and the bands/artists on the label, in the middle the latest news, and on the right our forthcoming release and gig schedule. Please remember to check the schedule regularly for new events.

CHEESE!

And taking of events we are pleased to announce the launch of a new (and first) book by label co-owner Ian Moss. October 23rd at The Peer Hat (we’re never out of the place) sees a fun-packed mixed media event to support the release. Here is the bill of fayre….bring your own cheese!

  • Ian has his book Cheese ( 100 unhip albums to love) published by Empire publishers in October to mark the event you are invited to this evening
    • 7-30 -8-30 Disco , Ian will spin discs from his collection released between 1970 and 1980 , the sounds that warped his mind and formulated his taste
    • 8-30 -9-00 Nick Alexander will interpret songs discussed in the book in his own inimitable style , this is seriously not to be missed
    • 9-00 – 9-30 – Poet, Journalist and erudite speaker Emily Oldfield will join in conversation with the author about his aims , motivation and passion ,
    • 9-30 10-00 Books available to be signed etc
    • 10-00 – 11-00  more Disco

 

 

German Shepherd Records Newsletter 50 – New Four Candles Album, The Harveys, German Shepherd on Mixcloud Direct, and Gigs!

Hello and welcome to this weeks edition of the German Shepherd Records newsletter,

We are still trying to cool down after a red hot night in Manchester last Friday where Adventures of Salvador launched their new album “Welcome To Our Village” accompanied by Electric Cheese and Umbrella Assassins. All three bands put in sterling performances as can be evidenced from Paul Forshaw’s videos of the event captured here.

This week we launch the new album from Four Candles “Nettle Rash” which is released on 12th July.

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The third album from the band finds them moving on and expanding their repertoire with the presence of Mark Taylor’s guitar coming to the fore, and Ian Moss’s words taking on a broad range of subjects from Climate Change, through political issues including the badger cull, to an exploration of the seamier side of sexual entanglements. With guest vocalists Anne and Julia from the band Matthew Hopkins and keyboards from engineer Simon “Ding” Archer the aural palette of the band has been expanded. This is their strongest album yet.

An interview with Ian Moss about the album will be aired on Bob Osborne’s Aural Delights show in taintradio on 11th July.

The band are playing live at the following

10th August – Yerrr Bar, Manchester with Adventures of Salvador, and The Ombudsmen
14th November – The Castle, Manchester with The Harveys.

Speaking of The Harveys – that is the new name for Harvey’s Rabbit and we will be releasing a brand new double A side single from the band “Skeleton Dance/Laugh At The Stars” in September – here’s a preview of the gorgeous single art

Skeleton Dance Cover Final

​GERMAN SHEPHERD ON MIXCLOUD DIRECT

We are pleased to announce the launch of German Shepherd Radio via Mixcloud Select

Hosted on label co-owner Bob Osborne’s Mixcloud channel this new venture will feature radio content from members of the German Shepherd Roster with exclusive shows only available to subscribers.  Subscription is £2.99 a month for access to brand new content featuring not only German Shepherd acts but also the bands and artists that our roster is listening to. We will also be featuring exclusive live content from our bands recorded at some of the gigs we have promoted.

To kick things off we have

  • an exclusive new show from Mike Powell of Night Operations which features a broad range of rock indie and electronica acts and couple of fellow German Shepherd artists – with John Grant, New Order, The Junta, Tin Machine, Dubstar , The Scissors, The Fevers, Weyes Blood, Ikara Colt, Ian Brown, and Temples.
  • the return of Bob’s Reformation Show with an interview with Ian Moss of Unseasonal Beasts and featuring tracks from Ian’s and Simon Ding Archers careers.

The next two exclusive shows will feature Four Candles and The Screaming Love Collective.

FORTHCOMING GIGS

July

  • 4th-
    • Smith, Hughes & Williams from The Parish Church Fire appearing at the Waiting for the Clampdown Book Launch at the Castle Hotel, Manchester – Free Entry
  • 5th –
    • Inferior Complex play The Shooting Star, Southampton
  • 13th –
    • Umbrella Assassins play The Smokehouse, Ipswich
      Electric Cheese play Indiefest 2019 at The Boulevard, Wigan
      Adventures of Salvador play Strummercamp Summer Party at The Star & Garter – £5
  • 19th –
    • The Scissors and Adventures of Salvador with Moonstrips  at Blue Moon Cambridge
  • 20th –
    • Keltrix play Whoosh Festival, The Missing Sock, Sto-Cum-Quy
      Adventures of Salvador with Umbrella Assassins and The Get play Dublin Castle, London
  • 27th –
    • Umbrella Assassins and Bouquet of Dead Crows play Pimjam festival at the Rose and Crown, Haverhill
  • 28th –
    • Monkeys In Love celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landing at The Klondyke Club, Levenshulme, Mark Corrin’s Elastikbande also play – afternoon show between 1pm and 5pm
  • 31st –
    • The Junta plays The Peer Hat

August

  • 3rd
    • Adventures of Salvador play Movers & SHAKERS Festival at The Longfield Suite Prestwich to support Forever Bury and Help Save Bury Football Club.
  • 9th –
    • Mark Corrin’s Elastikbande play The Railway, Didsbury
      Toska Wilde plays Margate Pride Rock at Elsewhere, 21-22 The Centre, Margate
  • 10th –
    • Weimar play Scarborough Apollo
    • The Mind Sweepers play Queen of the South Bar, Dumfries
    • The Ombudsmen, Four Candles, Adventures of Salvador play Yerrr Bar, Manchester
  • 16th –
    • Keltrix play The Green Man, Granchester
  • 24th –
    • Umbrella Assassins play Rugfest, Haverhill
  • 25th –
    • Toska Wilde and Brucie feature on the End of the Week Show in Sheppey FM before nipping around the coast to play at It Came From The Sea II at The Centre, Margate
  • 29th –
    • Dominic Carlton Jones plays The Peer Hat, Manchester

September

  • 20th –
    • The Harveys and Matthew Hopkins play The Peer Hat, Manchester
      Weimar play The Boulevard, Wigan

October

  • 12th –
    • Scissors play The Six Bells, Cambridge
  • 26th  –
    • Toska Wilde plays CULT 13 – Underground Alternative Night at The Venue Southend.
    • Poppycock play the Castle Hotel, Manchester

November

  • 1st –
    • Dominic Carlton-Jones plays Foundations Festival at Peer Hat/AATMA, Manchester
  • 2nd –
    • Weimar play Foundations Festival at Peer Hat/AATMA, Manchester
  • 14th –
    • The Harveys and Four Candles play The Castle, Manchester
  •  30th –
    • Adventures of Salvador and Weimar play The Globe, Glossop

December

  • 14th –
    • The Harveys play The Peer Hat, Manchester with the legendary TV Smith

2020

February

  • 1st –
    • The Junta will be supporting TRUE ORDER at Sunbird Records, Darwin

 

Newsletter 43 – Loop-aznavour, Four Candles, Forthcoming Releases and Gig News

Hello and welcome to the weekly newsletter from German Shepherd Records

This week

– A brand new single from punk Theremin master Loop-aznavour
– New video from Four Candles previews their new album
– What’s coming up
– Gigs

LOOP-AZNAVOUR RETURNS

Bury, UK based punk theremin maestro Loop-aznavour returns with a brand new single “The President of the Noise Abatement Society”. When he isn’t being lead singer with Adventures of Salvador Loop performs solo with his trusty Theremin delivering punk enthused electronic music with a cutting edge. His latest offering comprises two songs and is released on May 17th.  Loop will be appearing live with Adventures of Salvador over the next few months- see gig list below.

 

FOUR CANDLES HIT CULINARY PROBLEM

Four Candles are previewing their new album “Nettle Rash” with the punchy punk offering “Fly In My Soup” via You Tube. With a cameo appearance from Una Baines (The Fall, Blue Orchids, The Fates, Poppycock) this tale of culinary disaster is a good indicator of the type of thing to expect from the new full length. The band are appearing at this years Strummercamp and a series of other key gigs in May and June.

WHAT’S COMING UP

Forthcoming planned releases by the label:

This week…10th May

The Scissors Live – Smokehouse and Mirrors
The Parish Church Fire Single – Hunger

24th May – promotion of the two EP’s to date from australian band sycloner
31st May – new single from Ian and Keith Moss – “What Killed the King?”
7th June – Space Museum returns with a new album “Nightmare on Glitch Street”
14th June – Umbrella Assassins are back with a new single “Sweat It Out” with an album to follow later in the year
21st June – Adventures of Salvador release their new album “Welcome to Our Village” – the band will be launching the album at a gig on 28th June with Electric Cheese and Umbrella Assassins – more details to follow
28th June – Moff Skellington’s album “Gliding through Stone” will be re-released

GIGS

Weimar have announced a series of gigs

Weimar new gig list

The ever busy The Mind Sweepers have announced a new date

MS3105019

Full list of forthcoming gigs featuring our artists:

May
1st to 31st – Moff Skellington has an art exhibition at Canwood Gallery and Sculpture Park, Checkley, Hertfordshire
7th – Ian Moss performs in Unseasonal Beasts project with Simon “Ding” Archer at the Castle Hotel, Manchester as part of the MASS assembly event.
10th – Adventures of Salvador play Ramsbottom Cricket Club
11th – Keltrix play The Haymakers, Cambridge (Acoustic Set)
18th -Weimar play the Eagle, Salford supporting St Lucifer
18th – Pearl Divers and Dominic Carlton Jones play Malaga Drift, Church Street, Eccles
18th – Poppycock play Whalley Range Pride event at The Carlton Club
20th – Stewart Harris from Scissors on Dave Hammonds Smellypot Show on Cambridge 105 talking about the new live album
23rd – Inferior Complex play King Charles, Poole
24th – Inferior Complex play Royal Oak, Basingstoke
24th – Four Candles play Strummercamp at Oldham Rugby Club
25th – Sam Smith plays Strummercamp at Oldham Rugby Club
25th – Four Candles play PsyCo Circus All Dayer at The Peer Hat
26th – Adventures of Salvador plays Strummercamp at Oldham Rugby Club
26th – Inferior Complex play Clockwork, Southampton
31st – The Mind Sweepers play Dickies Bar, Dundee
June
1st – Umbrella Assassins (Rebel Arts Stage) Bouquet of Dead Crows (Portland Ballroom Stage) and Keltrix play Strawberry Fair, Midsummer Common, Cambridge
2nd – Inferior Complex play Bandstand, Eastleigh
5th – The Junta plays West Street Live, Sheffield
6th – Adventures of Salvador and Matthew Hopkins play Liverpool Fringe Festival
7th – The Parish Church Fire and Four Candles are playing The Eagle, Salford
7th – Inferior Complex play The Alexandra, Southampton
8th – Keltrix play Pride!, Jesus Green, Cambridge
8th – Inferior Complex play The Red House, Yeovil
13th – Inferior Complex play Angola ’76 , Shaftsbury
15th – Paul Winter from The Mind Sweepers is supporting JD Meatyard at Leith Depot Edinburgh tickets are £5 with £1 going to local homeless charity.
20th – Inferior Complex play The King Charles, Poole
21st – Weimar play The Eagle, Salford
22nd – Inferior Complex play King Charles, Poole
24th – The Junta plays The Peer Hat, Manchester with Lucky + Love.
26th – Dominic Carlton Jones plays Cuckoo Calling (Featured Artist) Bury New Road, Prestwich
28th – Adventures of Salvador play The Castle, Oldham Street, Manchester – ALBUM RELEASE SHOW with Umbrella Assassins and Electric Cheese
28th – Inferior Complex play The Alexandra, Southampton
July
5th – Mark Corrin’s Elastikbande play The Railway, Didsbury
5th – Inferior Complex play The Shooting Star, Southampton
6th – The Mind Sweepers play Electric Fields Festival, SWG3, Glasgow
13th – Umbrella Assassins play The Smokehouse, Ipswich
13th – Electric Cheese play Indiefest 2019 at The Boulevard, Wigan
19th – The Scissors with Moonstrips at Blue Moon Cambridge
20th – Keltrix play Whoosh Festival, The Missing Sock, Sto-Cum-Quy
28th – Monkeys In Love celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landing at The Klondyke Club, Levenshulme – afternoon show between 1pm and 5pm
31st – The Junta plays The Peer Hat
August
9th – Mark Corrin’s Elastikbande play The Railway, Didsbury
10th – Weimar play Scarborough Apollo
16th – Keltrix play The Green Man, Granchester
25th – Toska Wilde plays It Came From The Sea II at The Centre, Margate
October
12th October – Scissors play The Six Bells, Cambridge
26th October – Toska Wilde plays CULT 13 – Underground Alternative Night at The Venue Southend.

German Shepherd Records Newsletter #28 – Poppycock, Crab Dance GIs, Subscription Service, Four Candles and Gigs

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the German Shepherd Records Newsletter. In this edition

  • Poppycock release a new single
  • Crab Dance GIs release their debut single
  • Our subscription service
  • Four Candles in the studio
  • Gigs

POPPYCOCK RELEASE “MAGIC MOTHERS”

Poppycock return with their second single of the year – the feminist anthem “Magic Mothers”. For a long time this potent piece of garage rock has been a live favourite with its’ call and response structure and positive message of empowerment. Poppycock is the collective formed by Una Baines (The Fall, Blue Orchids, Fates) which is a favourite on the Manchester live scene.

The line-up for this release is:

Vox – Lucy Nyland and Christine Johnson
Guitar – Heather Greenbank
Bass – Matt Crawford
Drums -Stuart Quinn-Harvie
Keys – Una Baines

The single was recorded at the excellent community resource at Seed Studios in Old Trafford and was engineered by Manos Sarantidis and produced by Manos Sarantidis and Una Baines.

Release date is 30th November. This is a digital only release which can be accessed via Bandcamp and 33 other download platforms.

 

CRAB DANCE GIs RELEASE DEBUT SINGLE

The Crab Dance GIs is a project from Danny Cusick (KITB, The Hidden Gem) and Craig Bodell (The Hidden Gem). Imbued with Manchester Pop Spirit the duo have delivered two classic pieces of rainy city music. Motorik beats, guitars and keys and kitchen sink drama lyrics are at the centre of “(LIsten to the) Dole Drums” an unambiguous tirade against poverty, a psycho-geographical dance around Manchester City Centre, and so damned catchy it hurts. “Compassion Fatigue” similarly balances post-punk with Manc pop smarts – a tirade against the selfie obsessed attention seekers that infest our streets.

Release date is 30th November. This is a digital only release which can be accessed via Bandcamp ONLY.


OUR SUBSCRIPTION SERVICE

Now well established our Subscription Service via Bandcamp offers music lovers to opportunity to access everything we release in any twelve months for £40. As well as receiving everything we have released since we started the service, plus a selection of older releases – now numbering 19 releases in total – the subscriber gets access to rare and otherwise unreleased items from our artists that will not be available on general sale. With over 40 releases a year this is an absolute bargain.

Interested? Then sign up at – https://germanshepherdrecords.bandcamp.com/subscribe

FOUR CANDLES IN THE STUDIO

Four Candles are back at 6dB studios in Salford under Ding’s expert guidance to record their third album. Feedback is extremely positive and some of the new tunes that have appeared at recent gigs will be laid down. Expect to hear more at forthcoming gigs!

GIGS

The gig calendar is filling up fast with dates already in place for 2019. Particularly notable is Manchester Meltdown which is every Wednesday evening in January at the Peer Hat and features the best in Manchester and Salford grass roots music.

2018
November
22nd – Inferior Complex play The King Charles, Poole
23rd – Electric Cheese play Zombie Shack, Manchester
24th – Bouquet of Dead Crows launch new album Motus Octo at The Blue Moon, Cambridge
24th- Keltrix play The Crown & Pipes, Fenstanton
24th – The Strays play Fuel Cafe, Manchester
27th – Rose & The Diamond Hand plays The Kings Arms, Salford
29th – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Gringos, Norwich
29th – Four Candles play “Free Rock & Roll” at Sound, Duke Street, Liverpool
29th – Loop Aznavour plays El Manisero at Eva, Sackville Street, Manchester
December
1st – Toska Wilde plays Saks Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13 Showcase
1st – Bouquet of Dead Crows and Umbrella Assassins play Smokehouse, Ipswich
1st – Moet the Poet is back on the Independents Tour with JD Meatyard and others as MC at Bar 39 in Darwen.
2nd – Moet the Poet is back on the Independents Tour with JD Meatyard and others as MC at Sound, Liverpool
6th – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Mama Liz’s Voodoo Lounge, Stamford
6th – The Scissors (plus Ember Rev and Goddammit Jeremiah) at Cambridge Cornerhouse.
7th – The Mind Sweepers play Coach & Horses, Dumfries
7th -Toska Wilde appearing at Connect With Nothing Event at The Lido, Margate
8th – The Mind Sweepers and Øre playing The Troqueer Arms Dumfries
8th – Bouquet of Dead Crows play The Horn at the Half Moon, Bishops Stortford
8th – Boz Hayward and Keltrix with Misharlo play The Peer Hat, Manchester
8th – Poppycock support Vic Godard at Yes (The Basement) on Charles Street, Manchester with ASBO Derek
8th – Øre will be playing their debut gig at the TA in Dumfries
22nd – Drink and Drive play Strummercamp Fundraiser and Oldham Rugby Club
28th – Drink and Drive, Four Candles play Whittles, Oldham
2019
January
2nd – Manchester Meltdown Series 2 at the Peer Hat. Only £3 featuring Nick Alexander. Weimar, Trancedental Equations, and Four Candles
6th – The Mind Sweepers play the Big Burns Supper at The Hub, Dumfries
9th – Manchester Meltdown Series 2 at the Peer Hat. Only £3 featuring St Lucifer, Adventures of Salvador, Emily Oldfield and Four Candles
16th – Manchester Meltdown Series 2 at the Peer Hat. Only £3 featuring Poppycock, Factory Acts, Mystery Guest, and Four Candles
23rd – Manchester Meltdown Series 2 at the Peer Hat. Only £3 featuring Rose and the Diamond Hand, Matthew Hopkins, Bang Up The Elephant and Four Candles
25th – Dominic Carlton Jones, Ian Moss and Toska Wilde play The Kings Arms, Salford
30th – Manchester Meltdown Series 2 at the Peer Hat. Only £3 featuring Springfield Elementary, Bobbie Peru, Elastikbande and Four Candles
February
1st – Weimar launch their debut single at The Eagle, Salford with support from Dominic Carlton Jones
9th – Scissors play NCI Club Cambridge (Cambridge Central Aid charity fundraiser, Scissors headlining, other acts TBC)
March
2nd – Four Candles, Johann Kloos and Rose Niland play the Peer Hat, Manchester, a benefit for Macmillan nurses as a memorial for Modal Roberts

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German Shepherd Newsletter #20 – Dominic Carlton Jones, Bouquet of Dead Crows, Salford Music Festival, Moff Skellington, Matthew Hopkins, Gig News

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the German Shepherd Records newsletter.

This week:

– The new album from Dominic Carlton Jones
– Previewing the new album from Bouquet of Dead Crows
– Looking forward to the Salford Music Festival
– Moff Skellington update
– Welcome Matthew Hopkins
– New gig announcements

DOMINIC CARLTON JONES – DEBUT ALBUM

As trailed last week Salford singer-songwriter Dominic Carlton Jones returns with his debut album “Salford Punk Poetry Sadness Death New Life”. This nine song collection includes a dizzying array of genres and sounds, including spoken word, instrumentals and Dominic’s trade-mark clear and direct ballads; there are also dips into experimental and ambient sounds. The themes of the album centre around the  recent death of Dominic’s father from cancer, and in that context there is a heartfelt tribute to legendary Fall front-man and Salfordian Mark E. Smith who also battled the disease. The new release serves also as a perfect follow on from Dominic’s debut release “1”.

The album releases on October 5th in digital form only via Bandcamp and a range of other digital outlets.

Here is a sample track with the emotional “Fall Over Into Something New”

Commenting on the album and his experience with German Shepherd Dominic said:

” 8 months from being welcomed by German Shepherd I’m pleased to say I’m enjoying life on the label.Getting to know the music of the artists. Meeting those concerned and still feeling a genuine thrill to be a part of this movement and scene.

In that time space my EP was well received and achieved some comparative success in terms of sales and genuine appreciation from those connected. I went on to contribute the song “Cats front door “ to the 200 compilation album and The music for “like a poet dies “with Ian Moss and once again genuinely thrilled to be involved here.

My new music is the album:’Salford Punk Poetry Sadness Death New Life” ,which hinges around my fathers death from bowel cancer in January of this year and goes on to explore themes of belonging,spirituality loss,.geographical connection and life after death.It’s a challenging and thought provoking album bringing together an eclectic style of musical forms which I’ve always striven to as an ethic.”

BOUQUET OF DEAD CROWS – TEASER PREVIEW

We are gearing up for the release of the second album from Cambridge band Bouquet of Dead Crows in November with a preview of their track “Cold Inside”.

The band are touring extensively over the new few months please see the gig list below for details (although the band seem to think it’s above!).

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Pre-order the album here

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SALFORD MUSIC FESTIVAL – THIS WEEKEND

Manchester and Salford German Shepherd chums are encouraged to visit Eccles next Saturday for the second night of the Salford Musical Festival. Four Candles will be playing as part of packed evening of fine music including Bobbie Peru, Plexus, Garsoons, Jess Kemp, Surreal Kinnock and Blaney. There will also be a tribute to Mark E. Smith at the start of the evening from 6:30pm. There is a late bar and all of those artists can be watched for just £6. The venue is the Gilda Brook Club (the old Liberal Club) on Wellington Road, which is ten minute walk from Eccles Interchange. Fans can secure their ticket now by visiting the Salford Music Festival site . A full weekend ticket is just £10 which gets you two nights of entertainment and we highly recommend both nights.

MOFF SKELLINGTON UPDATE

Moff has a second EP under the Uncle Roy’s Utopian Vision Saga released on October 12th which coincides with his gig in Manchester the day before at The Peer Hat. Recorded in a morning at the legendary Uterus Cottage studios Moff explores his post-punk side with fervour. The lantern show at the Peer Hat promises to deliver an evening of Moff wonderment with his trademark wit and sideways look at the world. The event is not ticketed and is a mere £3.50.  More details on the EP next week.

MATTHEW HOPKINS JOIN GERMAN SHEPHERD

Melodic avant rock trio Matthew Hopkins have joined the German Shepherd family – more details next week but pending that here’s a sample of their excellent song-craft with the track “Something”

GIGS

Poppycock follow up their excellent set at The Peer Hat last week with a new outing on October 13th at new Manchester Venue Yes supporting Virginia Wing. The promoters have listed it as a Fates gig but it will be the Poppycock line-up playing Fates material. – Facebook event link here

Here is the full gig list

SEPTEMBER
27th – Inferior Complex play Ferndown RBL
27th – Electric Cheese support Tom Hingley at Preston Guildhall
28th – Inferior Complex play The Shooting Star, Southampton
28th – The Strays play Park Hotel, Wigan – Musicians Against Homelessness gig
29th – Four Candles play Salford Music Festival at The Gilda Brook Social Club, Weliington Road, Monton, Eccles
29th – Boz Hayward plays Levenshulme Market (afternoon gig)
29th – The Strays play The Jolly Collier, Heanor
29th – Bouquet of Dead Crows Play Deepdale Festival, Norwich
30th – Keltrix play Camboaters River Festival, Jesus Green, Cambridge, 6pm

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OCTOBER
5th – Electric Cheese play The Railway as part of Chorley Live
5th – The Scissors are at Oxford Wheatsheaf (Klub Kakofanney).
6th – Taser Puppets play Lost Bar and Club as part of Chorley Live
6th – Electric Cheese play Cunliffe Hall as part of Chorley Live
6th – Toska Wilde plays Saks Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13 Showcase
6th – Inferior Complex play Liberties, Southampton
11th – An Evening with Moff Skellington at The Peer Hat, Manchester
13th – Poppycock playing a Fates set at Yes, Manchester supporting Virginia Wing
14th – Taser Puppets play TNT Punk Fest at The Peer Hat, Manchester
14th – Positronik and The Strays are at Fab Cafe, Portland Street, Manchester
17th – The Strays play West Street Live, Sheffield
19th – Taser Puppets play Old Courts, Wigan
19th – The Strays play A.M.P. Music Bar, Buxton
25th – Bouquet of Dead Crows play The Pepys, Huntingdon – acoustic gig
25th – Ian Moss appears at El Manisero, Innside, Manchester
NOVEMBER
1st – Bouquet of Dead Crows play The Dublin Castle, London
2nd – German Shepherd Records Fundraiser at The Peer Hat, Manchester – with Drink and Drive, Taser Puppets, The Strays and Flea
15th – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Esquires, Bedford
17th – Drink and Drive and Four Candles play The Railway, Greenfield
22nd – Inferior Complex play The King Charles, Poole
24th – Bouquet of Dead Crows launch new album Motus Octo at The Blue Moon, Cambridge
29th – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Gringos, Norwich
29th – Four Candles play “Free Rock & Roll” at Sound, Duke Street, Liverpool

DECEMBER
1st – Toska Wilde plays Saks Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13 Showcase
1st – Bouquet of Dead Crows and Umbrella Assassins play Smokehouse, Ipswich
6th – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Mama Liz’s Voodoo Lounge, Stamford
8th – Bouquet of Dead Crows play The Horn at the Half Moon, Bishops Stortford
8th – Boz Hayward and Keltrix with Misharlo play The Peer Hat, Manchester
8th – Poppycock support Vic Godard at Yes (The Basement) on Charles Street, Manchester with ASBO Derek
8th – Øre will be playing their debut gig at the TA in Dumfries
22nd – Drink and Drive play Strummercamp Fundraiser and Oldham Rugby Club
28th – Drink and Drive play Whittles, Oldham/

German Shepherd Records Newsletter #14 – KIT B, Four Candles, Cambridge Calling Vol. 3, and, gig guide

Hello and welcome to this weeks edition of the German Shepherd Records Newsletter.

This week:

  • Four Obscure B Sides from KIT B
  • Four Candles put on their Chastity Belt
  • The third Volume of Cambridge Calling announced
  • Gig News

KIT B RETURN WITH FOUR OBSCURE B-SIDES

Manchester’s purveyors of quality popular music KIT B return with a new four-track EP “Four Obscure B-Sides” on August 24th. Founder members Danny Cusick (Guitar, Vocals) and John “Monty” Montague (Bass) are joined by new member Vicky Middles (Keyboards) and have created an amazing set of songs to launch this phase of the KIT B experience. With assistance from Craig Bodell the trio has crafted four pop nuggets which combine elements of Cusick’s tongue in cheek outlook on life, sex and death with electronica, motorik beats, and rock vibes all mixed in a tasty stew with a piquant Manchester flavouring. The band are still in the process of hiring a drummer so there are no live appearances planned at the moment.

You can hear track three from the EP “Swisser Swatter” here

FACEBOOK

FOUR CANDLES – CHASTITY BELT AND DIPPING A TOE IN THE WATER

The final pairing of tracks from Four Candles “Spiritual Rapture” album sees digital release as a single on August 24th. The intense “Chastity Belt” which chronicles vocalist Moet’s experiences in a previous band, and the groovin’ “Dipping A Toe In The Water”, which concerns Muddy Waters battle with the conservative music press on a UK Tour, complete a set of three releases which celebrate the bands biggest seller to date

Forthcoming gigs for the band:

26th August – The Station Hotel, Ashton Under Lyne
27th August – 2nd annual Pressure Drop summer gig (private by invite only)
21st September – The Peer Hat, Manchester with Poppycock and Charlie Marshall

Check out the “Chastity Belt” video on line

FACEBOOK

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THIRD VOLUME OF CAMBRIDGE CALLING ANNOUNCED

“Cambridge Calling” is a series of compilations of emerging artists from Cambridge which has been curated by Dave Hammond whose fortnightly show on Cambridge 105 Radio, The Smelly Flowerpot, is a mainstay of the cities music scene. The first compilation was released in March 2017 and a second in October of the same year. What started out as a vague idea to pull a few tracks together soon snowballed into the current multi-genre epic, fired by the enthusiasm of the artists involved. The more the perpetrator scratched the surface of the local music scene, the more it became apparent how much excellent music was out there. Aside from putting some superb music out there, the aim is also to raise money for deserving charities. A third volume comprising 21 tracks is currently at the post-production stage with a release date of August 31st planned. Stewart Harris (The Scissors) excellent artwork also adorns this volume. This will be a Bandcamp only release.

The featured artists are

Artist
Ember Rev
Carolyn’s Fingers
Goddammit Jeremiah
Lemondaze
The Fifths
Elma
Jessica Law
The New Fools
Blue Alatar
Grieving
Eeeyore
Section 3
Crackleford
Romy Gensale
Honeywitch
False Adults
Manic Mannequin
Influx of Insanity
Self Love
Moody Swing Things
Fay Roberts

FACEBOOK

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GIG GUIDE

Forthcoming gigs featuring artists released by German Shepherd

17th August – The Strays play Swan With Two Necks Macclesfield
17th August – The Junta and Special Friends Live At The Peer Hat, Manchester – album launch
17th August – Drink and Drive play The Railway, Shaw Hall Bank Rd, OL3 7JZ
19th August- The Strays play West Street Live Sheffield
25th August – Electric Cheese play Lucky 8s Rock and Blues Bar, Chorley
25th August – The Mind Sweepers play the Carlisle Fringe Festival
25th August – Umbrella Assassins play Rugfest, Haverhill
25th August – Toska Wilde plays It Came From the Sea, It Died On the Beach- festival afterparty at 101 Social Club, Cliftonville.
26th August – The Mind Sweepers play Solfest – Cottage Stage
26th August – Four Candles and Sam Smith play The Station Hotel, Ashton Under Lyne
27th August – Four Candles play The 2nd annual Pressure Drop summer gig (private by invite only)
27th August – Taser Puppets play Glaston-Bury, Bury
15th September – The Scissors and Charlie Marshall play The Cornerhouse, Cambridge
15th September – Mesmer Disciples play Music Lounge, Stockton on Tees
16th September – Mesmer Disciples play Museum Vaults Sunderland.
21st September – Four Candles, Poppycock and Charlie Marshall play The Peer Hat, Manchester
27th September – Inferior Complex play Ferndown RBL
27th September – Electric Cheese support Tom Hingley at Preston Guildhall
28th September – Inferior Complex play The Shooting Star, Southampton
5th October – The Scissors are at Oxford Wheatsheaf (Klub Kakofanney).
5th October – Shaun Maxwell of Taser Puppets plays a solo acoustic set at Chorley Live
6th October – Toska Wilde plays Saks Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13 Showcase
14th October – Taser Puppets play TNT Punk Fest at The Peer Hat
19th October – Taser Puppets play Old Courts, Wigan
2nd November – German Shepherd Records Fundraiser at The Peer Hat, Manchester – with Drink and Drive, Taser Puppets, The Strays and Flea
1st December – Toska Wilde plays Saks Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13 Showcase
8th December – Boz Hayward, Poppycock and Ketrix play The Peer Hat, Manchester
22nd December – Drink and Drive play Strummercamp Fundraiser and Oldham Rugby Club

German Shepherd Newsletter #13 – Toska Wilde, KIT B, Dominic Carlton Jones and Four Candles

Hello and welcome to your weekly news from German Shepherd Records

This week

  • Toska Wilde releases new EP
  • KIT B announces a new four-track release
  • Dominic Carlton Jones debut album
  • New Video from Four Candles
  • Gig Guide

TOSKA WILDE – OSCAR IN EARNEST

The shy and retiring Toska Wilde is back with a new six-track EP on 17tth August. Considerably more dance-focused than previous releases, Toska has embraced his inner Disco Diva and produced some remarkable dancefloor friendly stompers. From the high energy beats of “str8m8” with guest vocalist Brucie Bitch, through the Jamaican rhythms of “Choc Ice Boy” with Kev Daintree, to the Trump baiting martial beats of “My Camp” Toska feeds a diet of camp classics. Partnering with a range of producers and mixers he has produced his best work to date.

You can hear the Auster Boys/Space Museum remix of the lead track “str8m8” below

KIT B RETURN WITH NEW FOUR TRACK EP

24th August sees the return of KIT B with a new release “Four Obscure B Sides”. Following a few line-up changes the original members Danny Cusick (Guitar, Lead Vocals) John Montague (Bass) are joined by Vicky Middles (Keyboards) with assistance from Craig Bodell for this set of songs. The trio is still in search of a drummer for live work but this four tracker gives a strong indication of what to expect. The focus, as is usually the case with the band, is a pure Manchester Indie Sound.  Check out next weeks newsletter for more info.

Kit B

DOMINIC CARLTON JONES COMPLETES DEBUT ALBUM

5th October will see the release of the debut album from Salford based singer-songwriter Dominic Carlton Jones. The new release follows his highly regarded debut EP “1”.
Entitled “Salford Punk Poetry Sadness Death New Life” the album is an emotional journey through recent major events in Dominic’s life. Featuring spoken word, acoustic ballads, electronic pop and more experimental pieces we are extremely pleased with this new release. Watch this space for more details.

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FOUR CANDLES LAUNCH NEW VIDEO FOR FORTHCOMING SINGLE

The fourth and final single from Four Candles’ Spiritual Rapture album “Chastity Belt/Dipping A Toe In The Water” is previewed with a hot off the press brand new video which has been shared on Facebook – we’ve not had a chance to put it on YouTube yet but it has a lot of views on Facebook! The single will be released on August 24th as a digital-only release.

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GIG NEWS

Here’s what we have coming up :

17th August – The Strays play Swan With Two Necks Macclesfield
17th August – The Junta and Special Friends Live At The Peer Hat, Manchester – album launch
17th August – Drink and Drive play The Railway, Shaw Hall Bank Rd, OL3 7JZ
19th August- The Strays play West Street Live Sheffield
25th August – Electric Cheese play Lucky 8s Rock and Blues Bar, Chorley
25th August – The Mind Sweepers play the Carlisle Fringe Festival
25th August – Umbrella Assassins play Rugfest, Haverhill
25th August – Toska Wilde plays It Came From the Sea, It Died On the Beach- festival afterparty at 101 Social Club, Cliftonville.
26th August – The Mind Sweepers play Solfest – Cottage Stage
26th August – Four Candles and Sam Smith play The Station Hotel, Ashton Under Lyne
27th August – Four Candles play The 2nd annual Pressure Drop summer gig (private by invite only)
27th August – Taser Puppets play Glaston-Bury, Bury
15th September – The Scissors and Charlie Marshall play The Cornerhouse, Cambridge
15th September – Mesmer Disciples play Music Lounge, Stockton on Tees
16th September – Mesmer Disciples play Museum Vaults Sunderland.
21st September – Four Candles, Poppycock and Charlie Marshall play The Peer Hat, Manchester
27th September – Inferior Complex play Ferndown RBL
27th September – Electric Cheese support Tom Hingley at Preston Guildhall
28th September – Inferior Complex play The Shooting Star, Southampton
5th October – The Scissors are at Oxford Wheatsheaf (Klub Kakofanney).
5th October – Shaun Maxwell of Taser Puppets plays a solo acoustic set at Chorley Live
6th October – Toska Wilde plays Saks Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13 Showcase
14th October – Taser Puppets play TNT Punk Fest at The Peer Hat
19th October – Taser Puppets play Old Courts, Wigan
2nd November – German Shepherd Records Fundraiser at The Peer Hat, Manchester – with Drink and Drive, Taser Puppets, The Strays and Flea
1st December – Toska Wilde plays Saks Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13 Showcase
8th December – Boz Hayward, Poppycock and Ketrix play The Peer Hat, Manchester
22nd December – Drink and Drive play Strummercamp Fundraiser and Oldham Rugby Club

 

 

German Shepherd Newsletter #9 – Four Candles and The Strays

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the German Shepherd Records newsletter.

This week

  • Second Four Candles single
  • Strays live for Charity
  • Gigs
  • In the pipeline

SECOND FOUR CANDLES SINGLE

Following on from the “Strange Things (Are Happening” single of last month Four Candles return with two more tracks from the critically acclaimed “Spiritual Rapture” album with the effortlessly funky “You Can’t Be What You Pretend” and the blues-drenched “Basket Weaving”.

The band return to live action in August with a private party for Pressure Drop and supporting Australian visitor Charlie Marshall in September (see list below).

This digital-only release compliments the CD only full album which can be acquired at gigs and of which there is a limited number still for sale from our Bandcamp Page. The single releases on July via Bandcamp, Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play, Amazon and many more digital outlets

FACEBOOK – @FourCandlesManchester

STRAYS LIVE FOR CHARITY

Dynamic Punk duo The Strays return with a live album which captures them playing the best of their releases to date at The Globe in Glossop. Working through standout tracks like “Don’t Mither Me”, “Death In The Viper Room” and recent single “Richard Dreyfuss” the pair demonstrate why they are a must-see live act. All proceeds from the sale of the album will be donated to Mary’s Meals to help support famine relief in South Sudan.

The band continue to play live on a regular basis and have upcoming shows in Rotherham, Chesterfield and Manchester (see list below)

Here is opening track  “Don’t Mither Me”

FACEBOOK – @thestraysofficial

GIGS

Forthcoming gigs featuring our artists:

20th July – The Strays play The Cutlers Arms, Rotherham supporting System of Hate
21st July – Mesmer Disciples play Alston Festival
25th July – Mesmer Disciples play Santiago Bar, Leeds
26th July – Pearl Divers play Jimmy’s, Manchester
27th July – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Mama Liz’s Voodoo Lounge in Stamford
28th July – Drink and Drive and Poppycock play Peer Hat, Manchester
28th July – The Strays play Fuel, Manchester
28th July – Bouquet of Dead Crows and Umbrella Assassins play Pim Jam Festival, Haverhill
29th July – The Strays play Red Lion, Chesterfield
17th August – The Junta and Special Friends Live At The Peer Hat, Manchester – album launch
27th August – Four Candles play The 2nd annual Pressure Drop summer gig (private by invite only)
27th August – Taser Puppets play Glaston-Bury, Bury
15th September – The Scissors and Charlie Marshall play The Cornerhouse, Cambridge
15th September – Mesmer Disciples play Music Lounge, Stockton on Tees
16th September – Mesmer Disciples play Museum Vaults Sunderland.
21st September – Four Candles, Poppycock and Charlie Marshall play The Peer Hat, Manchester
27th September – Inferior Complex play Ferndown RBL
27th September – Electric Cheese support Tom Hingley at Preston Guildhall
28th September – Inferior Complex play The Shooting Star, Southampton
5th October – The Scissors are at Oxford Wheatsheaf (Klub Kakofanney).
5th October – Shaun Maxwell of Taser Puppets plays a solo acoustic set at Chorley Live
14th October – Taser Puppets play TNT Punk Fest at The Peer Hat
19th October – Taser Puppets play Old Courts, Wigan
2nd November – German Shepherd Records Fundraiser at The Peer Hat, Manchester – line-up to be announced shortly
8th December – Boz Hayward, Poppycock and Ketrix play The Peer Hat, Manchester
22nd December – Drink and Drive play Strummercamp Fundraiser and Oldham Rugby Club

IN THE PIPELINE

We have busy few months ahead with the following releases planned

03/08/2018 Moff Skellington – Uncle Roys Utopian Vision #1
10/08/2018 The Junta – Network
17/08/2018 Toska Wilde – Oscar In Earnest
17/08/2018 Poppycock – Iggy Pop/Magic Mothers
24/08/2018 Four Candles- Chastity BeltDipping A Toe
24/08/2018 Inferior Complex – Reflections
31/08/2018 Various Artists – Cambridge Calling Vol 3
07/09/2018 The Screaming Love Collective- Imola
14/09/2018 The Strays – new EP
21/09/2018 Moff Skellington – Uncle Roys Utopian Vision #2

Four Candles get huge praise for Spiritual Rapture

The new Four Candles album has been getting loads of praise and some very positive reviews. Spiritual Rapture was released as a CD on 22nd June via our Bandcamp Page and will also be released digitally as three separate two-track singles in June, July and August.

Lead track “Strange Things Are Happening” has a video which has had over a 1,000 streams and is now available on You Tube….

 

The bands gig at Manchester Meltdown on 23rd June, which was also the album launch was caught on video by Paul Forshaw….and reviewed by Emily Oldfield

 

Reviews of the album have come from Ged Babey via Louder Than War and also via Aural Delights.

The available stock CD is very low, although some copies have been held over for sale at gigs. Grab your CD now at our Bandcamp Page before they sell out.

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German Shepherd Newsletter 6 – Unnatural Appetites

Hello again and welcome to our weekly newsletter. In this edition

  • Auster Boys team up with Moet for a new album
  • The Strays embark on a summer tour
  • The Mind Sweepers reach record streaming levels on Spotify
  • Forthcoming gigs
  • In the pipeline
  • Four Candles album launch captured live

AUSTER BOYS MEET MOET

July 6th sees the release of a first collaboration between the Auster Boys and Moet. Titled “Unnatural Appetites” this seven-track collection contains some fantastic and fascinating new music.   Whilst Bob Auster South works on new pieces of text Moet has been co-opted to work within the Auster catchment area. The music is deliberately more brutal and scary than the usual Auster offerings. Descriptions of the tracks are as follows
  • HMK – aka the Heavy Metal Kid. You’ve seen him at gigs, he a flaneur of rock and roll, a wandering immortal of the music scene.
  • Ghosts – not the Albert Ayler tune but delivered in the same spirit. “What Am I Going To Find At The End of The Rainbow…..?”… a psychogeographical journey,
  • Spit – this has since morphed into a Four Candles song. When the establishment becomes the enemy,
  • Iceland – No falling down drunk in the Cafe Iol. Tales from the edge of the world. Austers like Travelogues very much
  • Monster – deep into the belly of the beast
  • Quit – The continuing story of Ian vs The Disease
  • The Species – Sci-fi in a Phillip K Dick style. Paranoia and the dark arts.
Bob Auster North – Sound Design and Production
Moet – Vocals & Lyrics
Bob Auster South – Conceptual Continuity
Adopting a brutalist electronica approach the Austers combine perfectly with Moet’s rhetorical polemic
You can preview opening track “HMK” here

THE STRAYS EMBARK ON A SUMMER TOUR 

Increasingly popular Punk Duo The Strays share their wit and wisdom in a variety of towns and venues as listed here. Don’t miss a chance to see Jon and Georgie mixing politics, humour and punk and creating a great live experience.

THE MIND SWEEPERS

We are pleased to reveal that our band from north of the border The Mind Sweepers have broken our own record for streams on Spotify following a successful festival appearance in June. Almost doubling our usual Spotify streams the band have certainly made an impact with their album “States of Mind”. Here’s a reminder of the bands’ work with the excellent “Threesome”;.
Check out the album on our Bandcamp Page

FORTHCOMING  GIGS

The gig calendar is filling up with some excellent events in coming months. Here is the latest list:
26th June – The Strays play Zombie Shack, Manchester
28th June – The Strays play West Street Live, Sheffield
29th June – The Strays play The Angel, Nottingham
30th June – The Scissors play Knackfest, Karma Farm, Isleham Fen
6th July – Inferior Complex play The Shooting Star, Southampton
6th July – The Strays play The Globe, Glossop
7th July – The Strays play Sharrow Fest After Party, Sheffield
7th July – Toska Wilde plays SAKS, Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13
14th July – Drink and Drive and The Strays play Whittles, Oldham with Little Avis
17th July – Scissors supporting KOLARS at The Portland Arms Cambridge
20th July – The Strays play The Cutlers Arms, Rotherham
21st July – Mesmer Disciples play Alston Festival
25th July – Mesmer Disciples play Santiago Bar, Leeds
26th July – Pearl Divers play Jimmy’s, Manchester
27th July – Bouquet of Dead Crows play  Mama Liz’s Voodoo Lounge in Stamford
28th July – Drink and Drive and Poppycock play Peer Hat, Manchester
28th July – The Strays play Fuel, Manchester
28th July – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Pim Jam Festival, Haverhill
29th July – The Strays play Red Lion, Chesterfield
27th August – Four Candles play The 2nd annual Pressure Drop summer gig.
15th September – The Scissors and Charlie Marshall play The Cornerhouse, Cambridge
15th September – Mesmer Disciples play Music Lounge, Stockton on Tees
15th September – Drink and Drive play Agueda, Portugal
16th September – Mesmer Disciples play Museum Vaults Sunderland.
21st September – Four Candles, Poppycock and Charlie Marshall play The Peer Hat, Manchester
5th October – The Scissors are at Oxford Wheatsheaf (Klub Kakofanney).
8th December – Boz Hayward, Poppycock and Ketrix play The Peer Hat, Manchester
22nd December – Drink and Drive play Strummercamp Fundraiser and Oldham Rugby Club

IN THE PIPELINE

Forthcoming releases – a sneak preview
29/06/2018 The Colourful Disease Economics EP
06/07/2018 Auster Boys With Moet : Unnatural Appetites Album
13/07/2018 m.t. scott When The Lamb Become Lame Album
20/07/2018 Mesmer Disciples Real Loud Single
27/07/2018 Four Candles You Can’t Be What You Pretend/Basket Weaving Single
27/07/2018 The Strays Live Album
10/08/2018 The Junta Network Album
17/08/2018 Toska Wilde Oscar In Earnest EP
24/08/2018 Four Candles Chastity BeltDipping A Toe Single
31/08/2018 Various Artists Cambridge Calling Vol 3 Compilation Album (Bandcamp Only Release)
07/09/2018 The Screaming Love Collective Imola Album
14/09/2018 The Strays new EP

FOUR CANDLES LIVE

Multiple thanks to our resident video historian Paul Forshaw for capturing Four Candles in all their glory live a the Peer Hat last Saturday launching the new album “Spiritual Rapture”. WARNING – THERE IS SOME VERY STRONG LANGUAGE IN THIS VIDEO

Newsletter #4 – new music from Four Candles, new video from PrunX and gig news – 22nd June

Hello again and welcome to the German Shepherd Newsletter

This week

– Four Candles invite you to join their Spiritual Rapture
– Gig News
– New video from PrunX
– Manchester Meltdown
– What’s coming soon

Four Candles – Spiritual Rapture

Our release for 22nd June is a bit complicated – we are releasing the new album from Four Candles in CD format via our Bandcamp Page, however those who live in the digital world will get the album in three chunks of two track singles in June, July, and August. Heavily road tested during the bands’ January Manchester Meltdown appearances this new six-track album shows the band moving into new areas with surprising variations in style and content from their debut album “Killing The Image”. Recorded at 6dB studios in Salford the core band of Phil Peak – Drums, Jon Rowlinson – Bass, Mark Taylor – Guitar and Ian Moss – Vocals are joined by Ding on Piano and David Wilkinson on Saxophone.

The variety across the six-track collection is remarkable with the quartet drawing on their collective experience to create a fresh and approachable sound with the trademark Moss vocals providing a perfect counterpoint to the lush textures of Mark’s guitar and Phil and Jon’s tight rhythms.

SR Cover.jpg

Well regarded artist Andy Thorley has had a sneak preview of the album as says “Spiritual Rapture is a cracking little silver disc that is great from start to early finish. Not wanting to overstay it’s welcome at under 30 minutes, it’s a perfect bite-size morsel, hunt your own copy down soon.”

With his 40th year on stage now achieved Ian Moss will be extensively interviewed by Stephen Doyle on his Sonic Diary Show on Salford City Radio at 9pm on 13th June. The show which will have an extended Mixcloud version will contain many examples of Ian’s work with bands including Hamsters, The Stepbrothers, Sicknurse, Kill Pretty and of course Four Candles.

doyle and moss.jpg
Messrs Doyle and Moss in Interview Mode

The bands next gig is on Saturday 23rd June at the Peer Hat as part of Manchester Meltdown (see below), copies of the CD will be available at the gig for a mere £5.

Here’s a preview of opening track – Strange Things Are Happening

Gig News

Several new gigs have been added to our list, notably with what looks like a cracking gig with Drink and Drive, and The Strays, at the newly refurbished Whittles in Oldham on 14th July.

  • 15th June – Keltrix launch their new album at The Corner House, Cambridge,
    21st June – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Bedford Esquires
  • 22nd June – Inferior Complex play The Railway, Winchester
  • 23rd June – Manchester Meltdown Summer All Day Special
  • 30th June – The Scissors play Knackfest, Karma Farm, Isleham Fen
  • 6th July – Inferior Complex play The Shooting Star, Southampton
  • 7th July – Toska Wilde plays SAKS, Southend on Sea as part of Cult 13
  • 14th July – Drink and Drive and The Strays play Whittles, Oldham with Little Avis
  • 17th July – Scissors supporting KOLARS at The Portland Arms Cambridge
  • 21st July – Mesmer Disciples play Alston Festival
  • 27th July – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Mama Liz’s Voodoo Lounge in Stamford
  • 28th July – Drink and Drive play Peer Hat, Manchester
  • 28th July – Bouquet of Dead Crows play Pim Jam Festival, Haverhill
  • 15th September – The Scissors and Charlie Marshall play The Cornerhouse, Cambridge
  • 15th September – Mesmer Disciples play Music Lounge, Stockton on Tees
  • 15th September – Drink and Drive play Agueda, Portugal
  • 16th September – Mesmer Disciples play Museum Vaults Sunderland.
  • 21st September – Four Candles, Poppycock and Charlie Marshall play The Peer Hat, Manchester
  • 22nd December – Drink and Drive play Strummercamp Fundraiser and Oldham Rugby Club

New video from PrunX

Rockin’ it out big style with new bassist Berny with an old song “Dirty Gods” PrunX are in fine form on this recently released video

check out their previous releases with us

Manchester Meltdown

Tickets are going fast for Manchester Meltdown on June 23rd. A limited number of early bird tickets are available at the reduced price of £7.50, on the day entry will be £9. Doors open at 1:30pm for ticket/wristband collection and the first act will be on stage at 2:45pm. Legendary DJ Stephen Doyle will be providing musical accompaniments throughout the day. Limited edition badges will be on sale at the event will all proceeds going towards fighting the hunger crisis in South Sudan.

Here are the set times:….

2-45 – 3-25 Monkeys in Love
3-45 – 4-25 Flea
4-45 – 5-25 Diagonal Science
5-45 – 6-00 Susan and Matt (Factory Acts)
6-30 – 7-10 Four Candles
7-30 – 8-10. Drink and Drive
8-30 – 9-10 The Empty Page
9-30 -10-10 Bobbie Peru
10-30 – 11-10 The Sandells

The Prick Jaggers will make a short appearance sometime during the day

Early bird tickets can be reserved at this page

What’s coming?

Our next release will be a new collaboration from Ian Moss and Moff Skellington, collective known as the Colourful Disease, with a five track EP called Economics.

The Colourful Disease_Economics

Moet’s Meltdown

German Shepherd label co-owner Ian “Moet” Moss has pulled together a five week Wednesday night residency at The Peer Hat in Manchester during January 2018. Pulling together the best cutting edge bands in the Greater Manchester area, the line-up includes a selection of German Shepherd acts as well as other notable performers from the scene.

Starting at 8pm each night and only costing £3 to enter the festival of music is not only value for money but gives Manchester gig goers the chance to sample new and exciting independent music.

The bill is still being finalised but the listing below provides the already agreed slots on what looks to be an exciting event which hopefully will become embedded as a routine in the Manchester music calendar.

Notable is the long-awaited return of the much loved Monkeys In Love after maternity/paternity leave.

Mr Moss’s own band Four Candles will be the resident act for all five dates and will kick off the evening at 8:15pm sharp. Moet promises a surprise on the Candles set list on each night!

It will be pay on the door with no ticketing.

Watch this space for more details

MM Flier

Birthday Sounds

We celebrate label co-owner Ian Moss’s 60th Birthday with a music filled gig at The Witchwood in Ashton-u-Lyne on June 25th, The show runs from 2pm and 8pm and features some of our own artists plus a selection of the best bands in the Greater Manchester area at the moment. It’s a free entry but we would encourage anyone attending to contribute £5 to cover expenses for the participating musicians.

On the line up

  • Factory Acts
  • Poppycock
  • ILL
  • tAngerinecAt
  • Four Candles
  • And a band that has had more retirements than Frank Sinatra but this is definitely the last ever gig – The Hamsters

Friends are welcome
Friends of the bands are welcome
Curious music lovers are welcome
All welcome !
Facebook Event Page

Moet 60th

 

 

 

Ecstatic, gleeful and happy – how we released a CD in five days……the debut album from Four Candles

A tale of a small record label…….

MONDAY 3rd April : A disagreement with a Sunday Night King Prawn and Cashew Nut concoction from the local take-away had left me somewhat jaded and inconvenienced, pottering around feeling sorry for myself. A message from my partner in musical crime Mr Moss indicated that he was aiming to get copies of the debut Four Candles album made for the forthcoming gig at the Eagle so “could I do the necessary background fettling with those nice people at Mint Copies in Stockport?”. The answer was yes of course.  A word to the wise “background fettling” is not as glamorous as it sounds, it generally involves several hours waiting for files to upload to various platforms chewing up bandwidth and making it impossible to do any multitasking on the lap-top. Anyhow the job is less onerous this time as the very talented Mr Jon Rowlinson (bass player of this parish) has already done the artwork, which is very impressive. Most of Monday afternoon is spent uploading the ten WAV files for sending on to Mint. It then strikes me,  always a glutton for punishment, the Mr Moss might also want a digital release of said album so I put it to him, he says yes. So Monday evening is spent uploading the tracks to Bandcamp, also a laborious process, again chewing up the bandwidth making multi-tasking impossible etc etc….I ask Mr Moss for some liner notes which are faithfully reproduced below……

Four Candles is a band comprising of ex Hamsters / Resist bassist Jon Rowlinson , ex Resist Drummer Phil Peak , Middlesbrough s finest export Mark Taylor on guitar and ex Hamsters vocalist Ian ” Moët” Moss. They formed in June 2016 and it was soon evident the creative chemicals were flowing between the four individuals producing vibrant exciting music. Low on funds they scraped together enough cash for sixteen hours studio time in November , in five hours these ten tracks were recorded in one or two takes with minimal overdubs , the next eleven hours saw the album mixed , now it’s available , the candles are lit and burning brightly.

TUESDAY 4th April – part of the digital distribution means signing up with a company that does the work of sending your releases to all the various platforms out there. We are with a company called Ditto who are very efficient at getting stuff processed quickly. Again there’s the tedium of uploading the files to them,  so most of Tuesday is eaten up with that with the usual impact on bandwidth and multi-tasking. There’s also the job of getting the news out to 400 or so DJ’s, Radio Stations, and Bloggers who get bombarded with our releases on a weekly basis. Always a complex process because people want things in different formats so there’s a need to upload things to a cloud for sharing (more time expended whilst that goes on) and to write some promo which “sells” the album, always remembering that a good proportion of the people you are writing to haven’t got a clue what you are wittering on about and , if they are thing like me, get dozens of e-mails from record companies or pluggers on a daily basis. You have to sell the uniqueness of your product.  There’s also the need to tell people that we are releasing it  via the usual social media outlets… Facebook, Twitter etc and that, hopefully the CDs will be done for Saturday and the gig at the Eagle, where the band are performing with The Get and Cannonball Statman. All the above is dutifully completed by around 9pm which means I can finally get around to catching up with doing work for next weeks podcasts. 40 of the 400 promo e-mails get bounced back for various reasons but that can wait for another day.

WEDNESDAY 5th April – an e-mail from Ipswich Community Radio advises that a track from the album will be played tonight – result!  Mr Moss reports that the CDs have arrived, well done Mint. We can let people know we will be selling them on Saturday night. The results of the dodgy King Prawn thing are just about wearing off so I’m feeling more human, better write a review with my schizo blogger podcaster hat on then……..

The Hamsters had to be put on ice in 2016 for various reasons which are too complicated to go into here. Messrs Moss and Rowlinson wanted to continue, the momentum from the Hamsters was good, and Mr Moss needs a “proper” band to properly exorcise his demons, as well as his other projects with brother Nemo and that Space Museum chap. The new drummer is Phil Peak who was in Resist with Jon, and the guitarist is Mark Taylor from Middlesbrough now based in Manchester. Mr Moss tells me is very excited, “we are doing interesting stuff” he says. Money is scrabbled together for a limited amount of time at 6dB studios under the expert guidance of Simon “Ding” Archer. The resultant ten tracks are laid down in one or two takes and mixed in an insanely short time period. Mr Moss circulates it to a few hardy souls, including myself. The general view is it is excellent, “the best band you have been in” say Mick Middles and myself say to Mr Moss almost simultaneously. Gigs occur at the Eagle and Freds Ale House and the audience reaction is extremely positive. Maybe this one gets taken out of the German Shepherd kennel and released by more recognised label? It’s that good. That, for whatever reason, doesn’t come to fruition.

The band continue to rehearse and write, new material starts to emerge on Facebook. We’re close to getting another album done, says Mr Moss, better get the first one out. Can we do it in five days? Of course we can, but let’s not make a habit of it!

As a student, participant, and would be hagiographer of Mr Moss’s body of work I have sensed his frustration at not having a vehicle strong enough to realise the visions in his head. There have been moments, and high points if you will,  of course, in the Hamsters, The Dodos, The Stepbrothers and the much regarded Kill Pretty, but there was always a feeling nagging in the back of my head that the propensity of musicians to want to ape their heroes rather than innovate could ultimately stifle Moss’s ambition to deliver something new and different.

I’ll be bold here and say this is Mr Moss’s “In A Silent Way” or “Agharta” – the culmination of a body of work which lead finally to something that stands on its own,  and stands apart from toxic genre classification, and breaks the mould.

Why is the question? What is the difference?

One key point is I think, finally, here is a band devoid of ego, where the constituent parts come together perfectly to create a band that stands as unit. 

The other key point is the instrumentation.

A drummer who plays an electric kit which can deliver a variety of options with the flick of switch, funk, dub, punk and prog are all deliverable from Phil’s kit. This allows for variety and experimentation across the album, and even within songs.

Jon Rowlinson’s bass has never sounded better melding punk and funk with riffs and runs that perfectly compliment the music.

Perhaps one of the main things though is Mark Taylor’s guitar which comes from a style of music not necessarily associated with Moet’s previous work, there’s an edge, be it Neu-Metal or whatever else you want to call it, but it is different, it adds a symphonic layer which transforms the tunes. There is invention and there are new sounds. The phased/flanged opening of the title track being a case in point.

And Mr Moss, after a period of prolonged ill-health, is back with gusto, and belligerence, and sometime tenderness with his best recorded vocal performance in a long while. At times he pushes his voice to the limit creating a dynamic sound which fits perfectly with musical explorations going on behind him.

The songs contain the usual Moss subjects and obsessions. There is the recognisable rock biog approach (as seen with 4VT and Basically Johnny Moped) with “Napa State” which recounts the tale of The Cramps infamous gig in a mental hospital. There is a sports biog with a tale of the Ali-Frazier “Thrilla in Manilla” in “14th Round”. Moss loves to celebrate outsider heroes and the band deliver a killer tribute to Lenny Bruce with “I Learned The Truth”. Moss’s literary explorations of identity continue with “The Man With No Mirrors” , “Monkey See Monkey Do” and title track “Killing the Image”, and his metaphorical tales continue with the both insanely catchy but sad “Horse”. The lyrically almost world-weary closer “I Was Almost Happy” nods back to the “punk wars” “show business”  and the inevitable point in time when your idols let you down, is counterbalanced with a massive martial beat and catchy melody. I reckon with this album Mr Moss can at long last be happy with his lot.  There is more but I won’t spoil it for you. This is music you need to explore yourself, and find your own meanings. It is great to listen to.

And there you have it. An album released and promoted in five days with a launch gig on the sixth day. And on the seventh day we rested…….

The CD version will be available at gigs, and via our Bandcamp page from Friday. Digital versions will also be available from Bandcamp on Friday and then via the usual platforms – I-Tunes, Amazon, Apple, Deezer, Napster and countless others too numerous to mention. And no we don’t plan to do a vinyl version so please don’t ask.

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Introducing Four Candles

Ian Moss and Jon Rowlinson the vocalist and bass player from Hamsters have got together with Mark Taylor (Guitar) and Phil Peak (Drums) to form a new group called Four Candles.

Taking inspiration from Krautrock , post-punk and no wave the band are currently pulling together a set for their first gigs. One of those first appearances will be at The Eagle in Salford on 12th August as part of a German Shepherd Showcase with Bouquet of Dead Crows, Saint Lawrence Verge and Poppycock.

Here are some early rehearsal recordings from the band.